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MORCHARD BISHOP - THE PROTESTATION RETURN OF 1641/2

 

By the end of 1640, King Charles I had become very unpopular.  Parliament forced him to make changes in the Constitution which gave them a bigger say in how the country was governed. From then on, Parliament was split into two factions - Royalists (Cavaliers) who supported the King and Parliamentarians (Roundheads) who wanted political and religious reform.

 

On 3 May 1641, every Member of the House of Commons was ordered to make a declaration of loyalty to the crown. This was ratified next day by the House of Lords. They called it their Protestation against " an arbitrarie and tyrannical government" and another order was made that every Rector, Churchwarden and Overseer of the Poor had to appear in person before the JPs in their Hundred to make this Protestation Oath in person. It was to  be a declaration of their belief in the" Protestant religion, allegiance to the King and support for the rights and privileges of Parliament".

 

They then had to go back home to their own parish where any two of them were to require the same oath of allegiance from all males over the age of 18. The names of all who refused to make the oath were to be noted and assumed to be Catholics.

 

We have, in the Devon Protestation Returns, a set of amazing documents - something akin to a census even though no women or children are named.  A transcription is available in the West Country Studies Library in Exeter.

 

The Protestation Returns are arranged by parish.

Morchard Bishop belonged to the Hundred of Crediton

The original spelling has been preserved

Ralph Babeare Philip Hodge George Sharland
Philip Backe Philip Hodge Simon Sharland
Roger Backe John Holwell John Shearloond
William Backe George Hore John Shearland
Peter Bagwell Hugh Hore John Shepyeard
John Barrye John Hore Henry Sherland
George Beard George Humacott Robert Sherland
Emmanuel Beare Matthew Isake Philip Shobroke
Roger Beeset Simon Kene Robert Shobroke
Anthony Berrye James Kingswell Geoffrey Shutt
Shinling Bibins Alexander Land Richard Smart
Robert Bodden Philip Lane Giles Smyth
James Bond Richard Lawrance James Southwood
Robert Bond Humphrey Lawrence George Sowdon
Robert Bond John Lyne Richard Speare
Robert Bond Roger Lyore William Speare
William Bond Gilbert Mare Bennett Strang
Roger Burrow William Martin Thomas Strong
Thomas Brownston Walter Maye John Stronge
John Burrow John Medway George Temlet
Edward Carm Richard Meadway Robert Thorp
Henry Carpenter William Meadway Robert Tincombe
Henry Carpenter John Meare George Tinkecom
Roger Cheriton Robert Meare Thomas Trape
Roger Cheriton Roger Meare Humphrey Tuckeild
Humphrey Chilcotts Thomas Meare Anthony Tucker
John Chudley William Meare Edward Tucker
John Clement Thomas Mercer James Tucker
Roger Clement Robert Midford John Tucker
Roger Clement Benjamin Milford John Tucker
Robert Clement Thomas Milford John Tucker
Thomas Clement Thomas Mogford John Tucker
John Comyns Ellnett Moore Peter Tucker
Lewis Comyns George Moore Ralph Tucker
Nicholas Coxe Hugh Moore Robert Tucker
Edward Crewes John Moore Robert Tucker
Thomas Cridpen Richard Moore Robert Tucker
John Cryspain John More Robert Tucker
Robert Daggary William More Robert Tucker
Durant Davie Thomas Mortemere Robert Tucker
Edmund Davie Simon Mortymer Roger Tucker
John Davie Roger Northcott Roger Tucker
John Davie Emmanuel Paidge Simon Tucker
John davie William Paidge William Tucker
Robert Delord Edward Parker William Tucker
Richard Delve John Phibye Thomas Venn
Roger Dodderage Elias Phillipp Robert Warman
Robert Dodford John Philp Edward Way
George Drake Gilbert Philpe Jerome Way
Stephen Drake Gilbert Philpe Robert Way
Jasper Elles Humphrey Philpe John Waye
John Flocker Roger Philpe Philip Waye
Edmund Gater Henry Pope Roger Waye
Henry Gater Henry Pope George Webber
John Gater John Pope John Webber
Philip Gater Philip Pope John Webber
William Gater Thomas Pope Peter Webber
Simon Geffry William Pope Michael Whethcon
Robert Gibbens William Pope Edward Whetston
John Gibbins Gilbert Pridham John Whetston
Dunstan Glasse John Prydham John Whetstone
John Glasse Roger Prye Robert Whetstone
Robert Godsland Henry Quicke Ambrose White
Thomas Gollocke Henry Quicke Peter White
John Gosland John Quicke Henry Wilford
William Gover Peter Quicke David William 
Peter Grantland Peter Quicke Ambrose Wilson
George Gregory Robert Quicke Anthony Wilson
Simon Gregory Roger Quicke Anthony Wilson
William Gregory Thomas Quicke Hugh Wilson
Henry Grimslade William Quicke James Wilson
George Grybbell William Quicke John Wilson
Matthew Hacke William Quicke Robert Wilson
Peter Haldon Anthony Reede Roger Wilson
Peter Hammett George Reede Thomas Wilson
John Harres Thomas Rewe William Woodman
William Heale Peter Rogers William Woodman
William Heard Peter Roode John Wreford
Humphrey Hedgland George Rowe Mattew Wreford
Peter Hilston George Rowe Michael Wreford
John Hinches George Rowland Richard Wreford
Robert Hockiton John Rowland -

(The following names are signatures)

Robert Snow - Rector

John Gover - Churchwarden

Simon Pridham - Churchwarden

John Shobroke - Constable

John Meard - Constable

William Hodge - Overseer

John Bond - Overseer

 

* For many centuries, Devon was divided into 32 administrative districts or Hundreds for land tax purpose.

 

Taken from the transcription by A. J. Howard published in 1973 which is available in the West Country Studies Library, Exeter.                                                                                                              Courtesy: Devon County Council

 

 

 
 
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